The state even offers free resources and tips on how to start a business in Arizona, including guides from the:
In addition, we’ve published a collection of resources for starting a small business, whether you want to launch a food stand, cleaning service, or eCommerce store.
If you’re looking for a summarized primer on how to turn your entrepreneurial aspirations into a profitable venture, use the comprehensive guide below. It covers some of the most important steps to starting a business in Arizona.
Starting a business in Arizona requires finding a ready market of customers for the products or services you hope to sell. Your small business should help solve a pain point for someone. Often, the best ideas originate from solving a need in your own daily life.
During this stage, don’t be afraid to ask friends or family members for constructive feedback about your business concept.
Some entrepreneurs may be financially prepared to pay for everything out of pocket. Others secure outside funding from investors, banks, friends, or family. Either way, you’ll need a written business plan to help guide your decision-making. This document should also outline to investors how you’ll spend their money – and when they can expect a return.
Like most states, Arizona discourages two or more businesses in the same niche from using similar names. To check if your first-choice name is still available, be sure to visit the state’s name database. When starting a business in Arizona, it’s also a good idea to run a similar search for trademarks and patents at the national level.
Once you confirm the availability of your business’s name, you can then start choosing a logo, URL, color palette, and other branding aspects for your business.
Every entrepreneur wanting to open a business in Arizona must choose a legal structure. The four most popular types include:
In Arizona, all new businesses must formally register with the state. This process used to involve filling out a physical form, but it’s now possible to complete this step online.
An employer identification number is the business equivalent of a personal Social Security number. The IRS uses both for tax purposes. Thanks to this online application form, it only takes a few minutes to request your EIN.
Depending on the nature of your business or profession, you may be required to secure various certifications, licenses, or permits. Restaurant owners, for example, must pass food safety inspections. Retailers need reseller permits. Hairstylists in Arizona must also be certified and accredited.
If you plan on hiring staff, you need to set up payroll, federal and state tax withholding, paid time off, and unemployment insurance. For a more comprehensive list of employer obligations in the state, visit the Arizona Department of Economic Security or the Industrial Commission of Arizona.
Each business is required to report income and expenses at the federal, state, and local levels. Because corporate tax preparation is a bit more involved than personal filing, you may need to work with a certified public accountant (CPA) or professional tax preparer to help you save time and minimize costly errors.
While it’s technically possible to run a cash-only business, accepting all payment types – including purchases made via credit card, debit card, gift card, or mobile wallet – can help set you up for long-term growth. At Clover, our POS systems support all major payment types. Additionally, our POS solutions integrate with some of the most popular accounting software platforms, so that all of your expenses and sales are instantly reflected in your books – with no manual entry required.
You will need a dedicated business bank account in which to accept payments, process payroll, and pay your vendors. Having a separate bank account for your small business also makes it easier to keep corporate expenses separate from your personal ones.
Another step in starting a business in Arizona involves designing a marketing strategy that brings in those first customers. Paid advertising, social media, and printed flyers are all common marketing strategies used for generating traffic.
To keep those customers returning, however, you may want to create a customer engagement and loyalty program that can help form relationships and reward customers for purchases and referrals.
Hopefully we’ve helped you understand how to start a small business in Arizona – from researching potential ideas to converting your first customers. If you need help designing a payment environment that can help you run your business and boost future sales, schedule a call with a Clover Business Consultant today.CONTACT SALES
This information is provided for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal, financial, or tax advice. Readers should contact their attorneys, financial advisors, or tax professionals to obtain advice with respect to any particular matter.